The Importance of Local SEO
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is a diverse and dynamic topic in itself. An important component of SEO that small businesses should not overlook is that of local SEO. Local SEO is defined as a specialized kind of online marketing that increases the visibility for businesses in terms of ranking for keywords that are geographically related. It becomes more challenging for businesses to optimize their local SEO when they are targeting multiple locations, such as those serving the entire country instead of a particular city or state/province.
Local SEO matters because search engines such as Google factor in location data when displaying search results. Also, when people search for a business online, they typically include a location keyword along with the type of company they are looking for. This is where local SEO comes into play. The first way that this can be done for your website is through creating location specific pages within the site. Creating content that is optimized specifically for each location you serve using individualized pages/URLs is the way to go.
According to Google’s Head of Web Spam, Matt Cutts, each location should get its own URL, and each page and corresponding URL should be included in your website’s sitemap to help search engines like Google index the content. With that said, it’s important that each location-specific page is unique to itself, in that the information isn’t identical to the other location pages with just the location keywords swapped out. This is not only to avoid duplicate content penalties but to also provide a more relevant and targeted experience for consumers using your website.
Submitting all the locations you serve to Google Places is also important for local SEO, as Google search engine users will be able to identify your company if they are looking for something in a specific area. And, since the Places listing is also tied to the associated Google+ account, an opportunity is created to even further expand your brand’s online presence for each location separately.
With the individualized approach to local SEO, you will be better able to tell how locations are performing separately from others in terms of rankings, traffic, and goal completions found through the page’s analytics. Local SEO will also help consumers find your company from various locations through the use of the geographically-related keywords. Cityline Websites can help your business be found using general and local SEO in combination with an effective website on an affordable monthly payment plan.